hotel.de reports successful first half of 2010
- Sales grow by 10.4% to Euro 16.95 million
- First-half EBIT already positive at Euro 0.04 million
- Further growth potential in second half of year
Nuremberg, 17 August 2010 – hotel.de AG, one of the leading worldwide online hotel reservation services, can look back on a successful first half of 2010. Sales grew by 10.4% from Euro 15.36 million to Euro 16.95 million. Germany accounted for sales of Euro 9.78 million, as against Euro 9.15 million in the previous year. International sales showed even more marked growth of 15.7% from Euro 6.20 million to Euro 7.17 million, a development driven by the strong recovery in the economic climate and resultant growth in international travel volumes among business and private customers alike. The international share of sales rose from 40.4% to 42.3% as a result. “The growth in the international share of our sales reflects the consistent implementation of our internationalisation strategy”, commented Dr. Heinz Raufer, CEO of hotel.de AG. “We consistently maintained our investments in acquiring new customers, particularly abroad, even during the 2009 crisis year”.
Business breaks even in first half of year already
Higher sales and the measures taken to enhance efficiency have impacted positively on earnings as the year has progressed. The company reached breakeven in the first half of the year already, and thus one quarter earlier than in the previous year. EBIT rose from Euro -0.29 million to Euro 0.04 million. At Euro 0.21 million, the net surplus for the period was also higher than the previous year’s figure of Euro -0.05 million. Of the company’s investments in its international expansion, a sum of around Euro 2.00 million is accounted for in these earnings figures. Over and above this, second-quarter sales and earnings were also affected by two one-off items. On the one hand, the volcanic ash cloud led to an 18% increase in cancellations during the relevant period. In addition to this, travel volumes were noticeably lower during the Football World Cup. hotel.de therefore sees significant potential for sales and EBIT growth in the second half of the year.
The great interest shown in cost-effective online reservation systems continued in the second quarter of 2010, leading to pleasing new customer growth at hotel.de. The company expects this to impact positively on booking volumes and sales as the year progresses. Further growth momentum is expected from the increasing internationalisation of the company’s business, an area in which hotel.de will be investing around Euro 4 million once again in the current year. “The aim is to enhance the attractiveness of our services for booking customers worldwide. That’s why we will be further boosting our portfolio in destinations outside major cities, thus ensuring that we offer the widest possible range of hotels. Not only that, we also plan to increase the number of languages in which our services are available from currently 17 to 37, thus enabling us to rapidly cover all relevant languages worldwide”, added Dr. Raufer.
To further improve its sales and earnings situation, hotel.de AG plans to increase its average hotel commission margin to around 12.0% by the end of the year. Even after this, hotel.de will still be the best-priced provider in the market. Long-term improvements in profitability are also to be achieved by increasing process automation by making greater use of IT.
In view of these developments, the Management Board has confirmed its forecast for the 2010 financial year as a whole, and accordingly expects to see sales growth of between 10% and 15% and a slight year-on-year increase in earnings.
The extensive half-year report is available for downloading from the Investor Relations section of the company’s website at www.hotel.de.
hotel.de AG, with its international brand hotel.info, operates a free hotel reservation service for companies and private customers at www.hotel.de and www.hotel.info. The company offers more than 210,000 hotels worldwide for booking online. Customers benefit in this respect from considerable cost savings. hotel.de shows all available room rates for each hotel, thus always enabling customers to select the lowest or most appropriate rate. All bookings are forward simultaneously, securely and directly to the individual hotel. This is guaranteed by the unique integration of hotels’ own reservation systems (so-called CRS and PMS systems) and hotel.de’s own myRES reservation system under hotel.de’s standard user surface. hotel.de’s corporate application is already used by well-known companies, such as BASF, SAP AG, Texas Instruments and Ernst & Young AG. Since January 2007, hotel.de has extended its portfolio to include a conference enquiries and booking system. Business customers in particular stand to save time and money due to the optimised conference organisation processes facilitated by this conference tool.
hotel.info – the international brand of hotel.de AG – was created to promote the company’s expansion into international markets. To acquire new customers and hotels abroad, sales offices have already been opened in the UK (London), France (Paris), Spain (Barcelona), Italy (Rome) and China (Shanghai). The company’s high share of business customers with international operations facilitates its entry into new markets. The aim is to establish hotel.info as the leading online hotel reservation service for business and private customers in the foreign markets mentioned and then step by step across the whole of Europe.